“Mendeleyev’s Dream is a wonderfully entertaining and stimulating journey from alchemy to chemistry in search of the elements of our universe. It is a book of great clarity and depth.” Jim Crace
“A wonderful historical romp through mankind’s attempts to understand the constituents of matter.” The Observer
“What stuff is the world made up of? It is the history of this question which Paul Strathern tackles, and he brings to it two qualities unusual in the history of chemistry: readability and intelligibility. Not least he makes the chemists come alive.”
“Strathern is an entertaining guide, capable of marshalling a colourful cast of thinkers and experimentalists. It’s a pleasure to find a popular book about chemistry.”
In 1869 Russian scientist Dmitri Mendeleyev was puzzling over a way to bring order to the fledgling science of chemistry. Wearied by the effort, he fell asleep at his desk. What he dreamt would fundamentally change the way we see the world. Paul Strathern tells the dramatic and entertaining story of humankind's quest to discover the fundamentals of chemistry, culminating in Mendeleyev's dream of the Periodic Table.
About the Author
Paul Strathern was born in London in 1940. He studied physics, chemistry and maths at Trinity College, Dublin, before switching to philosophy. He is the author of A Season in Abyssinia, which won a Somerset Maugham prize, two highly successful series of short introductory books, Philosophers in 90 Minutes and The Big Idea: Scientists Who Changed the World, Mendeleyev’s Dream and Dr Strangelove’s Game. Paul lectures in philosophy and science at Kingston University.